Yeah I know, I haven’t posted anything in ages. Why? Because to be perfectly honest, my life isn’t all that interesting. That, plus my disgust with the election has had me in a funk.
Anyway, I’ve had my Schecter C-1 FR guitar for years now, and I’ve always really liked the guitar itself, but I wasn’t crazy about the pickups. It had Duncan Designed pickups in it that were the equivalent of Seymour Duncan Blackouts. I never really cared for their tone, which I found too “bronze” if I were to put a color to it. They were also not all that tight in the low end and kinda fuzzier than I’d have liked. Another thing I didn’t care for is that they weren’t coil tapped like the EMG’s in my Schecter Hellraiser, and the clean tones on it left something to be desired.
So…, after seeing numerous videos of Mark Day playing his Suhr Modern with Suhr Dough Aldrich pickups, and loving the tone he was getting from them, I did some research on them, read reviews and watched more videos. Utterly convinced of their awesomeness and thrilled with the fact that they were passive, so I could eliminate the 9v battery from the guitar, I ordered a set from The Mad Ape. Check them out. Not everything they stock is online, including the pickups, but if you call Matt there, he’ll hook you up if they have what you’re looking for. You can check out the site at http://www.themadape.com. I recently made my first order from them when I bought a Schecter guitar case for the Schecter Gryphon I bought on Ebay, but more about that in a bit. Anyway, the case didn’t ship, and when I called to find out where it was he said the system said it shipped, but it didn’t, and he took care of it immediately. He even offered faster shipping on it, but I told him not to worry about it. He also told me he’d give me a discount on the pair of Aldrich pickups, which was awesome. I wasn’t ready to get them right then, but when I was, sure enough, he got them out right away and I had them in no time. Great customer service there. Not trying to be an advertisement here, but when you get great service and great prices, you should let people know. Oh, and the case was cheaper than anywhere else just from the get go, so that was cool too. That’s how I found their site in the first place.
Anyway, so I installed the pickups yesterday after waiting for the two push-pull pots to arrive. I knew they were coming yesterday, so I took out the old stuff, popped in the new ones and got everything ready to go. While I waited for the pots to arrive, I cleaned the fretboard, polished the frets and oiled it, which is something you can only do when the strings are all off, which is rare, so I figured I might as well take advantage of the opportunity.
So the pots arrive and I go online to find the wiring schematic I had bookmarked. I printed it out and proceeded to wire everything up, which was a total pain in the ass. Seriously. Anyway, after I got done wiring it all up, I went and plugged in the guitar to see if they were working by tapping a screwdriver on the magnets. The neck pickup wasn’t working, but the bridge one was. Oh great. So I redid the solder connections and such, and tried again. Still no dice. Plus, I had wired the switch backward. Ok, frustrated and pissed off, I finally came to realize, I was using the wrong damn wiring diagram for what I was trying to do. Wonderful. So I found the right one, had dinner, and then proceeded to de-solder everything, which was a pain because I had to clean off all the solder, and my solder sucker is less than stellar. I need to get a real one at some point.
Once I got everything cleaned up, I went to work soldering up everything the way it was supposed to be, and did a nice clean job of it, except for the ground wires. I had a bitch of a time getting the solder to stick to the pots for the ground wires, but I did finally manage it, even though it looks a bit messy. Still, what a pain. I took it and plugged it in and the pickups were working as expected. After that I had to restring it, and naturally I popped my high E string. Then the new one I put on, like an idiot, I trimmed too short, so I had to open yet another new pack to get one out of there. I’ll have to pick up a single to replace it.
Anyway, I’m all done and the pickups sound phenomenal. They’re the best sounding pickups I’ve ever heard when coil tapped, and sound amazing in humbucker mode as well. I can see why Mark Day was such a huge fan of them. I saw a few reviews that said the neck pickup was too hot to do nice cleans. Don’t you believe it. It does gorgeous cleans. Those guys who said that probably just had the gain on their amps too high.
So that’s it for that. I love my new pickups, and I especially love not having to worry about a battery in the guitar, so it’s a win/win. Plus, I can actually play and enjoy the guitar now that it has some great pickups in it instead of the ones I wasn’t happy with.
I also recently got a new guitar, as mentioned above. It’s a Schecter Gryphon, and I managed to snake it for $177 on Ebay. It had one ding in it and a couple of small dents, but was in otherwise awesome condition. I have it at a luthier right now getting the ding and dents fixed. It’s a string through with a TonePros bridge, which is nice. I am so sick of dealing with Floyd Rose trems I could scream. The guitar also had another issue with the push-pull knob on the tone pot not working properly. I have a new one here to replace it, but I need to get the guitar back first. It has Duncan Designed pickups as well. The ones in that are the equivalent of the SH-6 Distortion set, and I actually like them quite a bit. They’re really right and have great definition, and the cleans sound really nice as well. Maybe someday when I have money I’d be tempted to replace them with the Aldrich set, but in general I really dig them.
So that’s about it. The only other thing I have to report since my last post is that our piece of crap GMC Jimmy finally crapped out on us and we had to replace it. We got a 2007 Hyundai Elantra and we absolutely love it. It’s a wonderful car.
I’ll try to post more often here, but to be honest, I’m so sick of politics and the world in general that I don’t want to talk about them anymore, and I generally don’t have a lot going on in my life that’s worth posting about. I guess that’s a good thing in some ways, but then again, it makes one day seem like the next, so it kinda sucks. Oh well.
(Current Mood: tired